Six Al Qaeda Militants, Two Soldiers Killed in Yemen - The New Indian Express

Six Al Qaeda Militants, Two Soldiers Killed in Yemen

Published: 01st May 2014 06:45 PM

Last Updated: 01st May 2014 06:45 PM

Up to six Al Qaeda militants and two soldiers were killed following a five-hour clash in Yemen's southeastern province of Shabwa early Thursday, according to a defence ministry official.

"Scores of Al Qaeda militants attacked army troops after a massive military operation was launched near Azzan town in Shabwa province. Six militants and two soldiers were killed," the defence ministry official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Heavy machines and artillery were used in the confrontation which took place in Shabwa's suburbs, the military official said.

Two militants were captured in the clash which involved several foreign Al Qaeda militants from various Arab countries, according to the official.

The Yemeni armed forces Tuesday launched an all-out offensive and military mobilisation with participation of over 1,600 soldiers and 400 security personnel against several Al Qaeda hideouts in the country's southern territories.

On Thursday, the Yemeni interior ministry announced heavy security measures around vital facilities and military bases in Sanaa and other main cities as a precaution against possible attacks.

The ministry urged security units to remain vigilant to "most likely Al Qaeda retaliation attacks".

The Yemen-based Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has frequently staged revenge attacks on local targets, including military ones, and foreign missions in the impoverished Arab country.

The AQAP, which emerged in January 2009, is considered the most serious strategic threat to the Yemeni government and neighbouring oil-rich Saudi Arabia.

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